UPDATE: For an updated story on the school board's decision, click here.

The fate of a Palestinian's educational future in York County will be decided Thursday when Northern York County School District board members vote whether to allow the would-be exchange student to attend classes in the district.

Earlier this week, a couple of board members raised concerns that the student, who lives in the West Bank, may harbor anti-American and anti-Israeli sentiment.

During a committee meeting Tuesday night, two board members raised concerns partially because the student listed on his exchange student application that he's from the "occupied territory of Ramallah" instead of the "West Bank," board president Harry Lake confirmed Wednesday night.

The region has been a hotbed of fighting between the Israelis and Palestinians for decades.

"We've never hosted one (an exchange student) from the West Bank or Gaza," Lake said.

Host found: According to a committee meeting agenda, a host family has been selected for the student, whose name is Rami.

The district has hosted students from countries all over the world.

"We have a long history of having students from all over the world. Europe, Asia and Middle East," said Jason Beals, assistant superintendent.

Last year, the district hosted an Egyptian exchange student, he said.

At the time, the North African country was headed by the elected President Mohamed Morsi, the ranking member of Muslim Brotherhood. Morsi was deposed by the military earlier this month.


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When the student was at Northern York, Lake said he didn't hear of any problems that would lead board members to think a student from Palestine would raise a ruckus.

"He was a great student. We didn't have any problems," Lake said.

The board meeting will be held in the library of the Northern High School, 653 S. Baltimore St., at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 18.

-- Reach Greg Gross at ggross@yorkdispatch.com.